Replacement for MBA

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by pl1984, Apr 14, 2018.

  1. pl1984 macrumors 68000

    Oct 31, 2017
    My father has a 2011 13" MBA which has served him well. Recently he approached me on possibly replacing it. He didn't mention why as it is working fine and his computing needs are light (e-mail, word processing, Internet browsing) I haven't had an opportunity to speak with him about his needs but I've been giving a replacement device some thought.

    This unit replaced a previous 13.3" MacBook Pro (Mid-2010, 7,1 version) not because the MBP was under powered for his needs but I thought the smaller size of the MBA, along with the SSD performance, would be more to his liking. To my surprise he mentioned the MBA felt a little too thin for his comfort. While he hasn't complained about the size he did imply, or I inferred, the larger size of the MBP was more to his liking.

    Now I have to try and recommend some options for him. I immediately thought of the MacBook but if he thought the MBA was too thin the MacBook is out. The new MBP is an option but, even the entry model, is overkill for his needs. Plus it's approaching the thinness of the MBA. A new, as in never owned but technology dated, MBA is a possibility but it's the same form factor he's already expressed a lack of preference. I've considered a used, late model, 13.3" MBP which has the form factor he enjoyed before. But this is a discontinued product.

    Anyone faced a similar issue? If so what did you ultimately do? Once I have the chance to speak to my father I can get his input but wanted to have some pros and cons from others.
  2. Macdctr macrumors 6502

    Nov 25, 2009
    Ocean State
    Take your father to Best Buy or an Apple store so both of you can check out Apple's latest offering and see what he likes. Then you can go from there.
  3. Boyd01 macrumors 601


    Feb 21, 2012
    New Jersey Pine Barrens
    Seems like you need to have that conversation before doing anything else. At least he is accustomed to the 13" MBA, and the new ones are a significant upgrade. Battery life approaches twice the 2011 model (and since his is old, it should be even more).

    The 2011 MBA only has USB 2.0, so if he uses any external disks that is going to be a speed increase of 3 to 6 times. And the 802.11ac wifi is maybe 5x faster which makes wireless network drives twice as fast as a USB 2.0 hard drive on his 2011.

    The new SSD's are also much, much faster and the base model has 8gb RAM (4gb RAM was the max you could get in 2011). I used to have a 2011 MBA and it was great in its day but is really showing its age in 2018.
  4. Falhófnir macrumors 68030


    Aug 19, 2017
    A new MBA would be a reasonable upgrade without breaking the bank. It has traditional style ports, a conventional (and reliable) keyboard, good battery life and the screen is good enough if it's what you're used to already. The current MacBook pros make quite a few compromises for the sake of being thinner and are priced well above what they'd really be worth to someone who is just doing light tasks.
  5. Mrbobb macrumors 601

    Aug 27, 2012
    Dunno if asking us do anything, is a personal preference. If he wants something new, then there is something in the old one he doesn't like, so go from there.
  6. Scepticalscribe Contributor


    Jul 29, 2008
    The Far Horizon
    Two excellent posts and unless there is something about the form factor, or screen, that grabs him, a MBA of a more recent vintage than 2011 would seem to be to be an excellent option.

    The MBA is a terrific computer: Since the 2013 upgrades the battery life has been superb, and it is a fast, reliable, powerful, portable computer. Moreover, the keyboard is a lot better and easier to use (and more forgiving) than those of more recent models, it has MagSafe, and those USB 2.0 ports.

    Apart from the lack of a retina screen, what is there not to like?

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